College student Nicholas Baier, 18, died after being hit by a truck outside of a bar in the central Alberta community of Olds in October 2010. ((Baier family))

The man who drove his truck into a crowd outside an Olds bar last October, killing one, was given a life sentence with no chance of parole for 14 years Friday.

Jeffery Leinen has a long history of public menace, said Court of Queen's Bench Justice Marsha Erb, after the court heard about past criminal driving records against the 25-year-old.

"[The crime was] nothing short of a profound act of cowardice," she said.

Earlier Friday, relatives of victim Nicholas Baier told court how the 18-year-old’s death has impacted them.

Baier was described as unassuming, respectful and completely trustworthy — someone that everyone liked.

His uncle Frank Van Humbeck said the family is still grieving.

"If you haven't lost children, you can't even possibly imagine, and even in our case, we're fairly close to it, so now you start to imagine, but you're still not there yet. You still can't get in John and Maggie's head. This is not the way life's supposed to happen."

A jury found Leinen guilty of second-degree murder this week, a crime that carries an automatic life sentence.


  • A previous version of this story said Leinen was sentenced to 14 years without parole, when he was actually given a mandatory life sentence for second-degree murder with no chance of parole for 14 years.
    Oct 11, 2013 12:14 AM MT